Friday, June 05, 2009

Quick Update-Cella's visit

Got a daughter coming to town, so there doth my interest lie.

Still, I should make mention of Paul Cella's visit a couple weekends ago. He and his father-in-law (a great guy - Paul got lucky in his in-laws) hit the links with Bernadette and me. I've got video of Paul's swing, but not permission to post it. Let's just say that he now knows more about Florida wetlands than the Okeechobee Water Management District. And yet a pleasanter course companion you could not ask for. (Bernadette, by the way, beat us all. Handily.) He can't blame his golf on the clubs, though. We gave him the set Bernadette used in her first year on tour, top-o-the-line Callaway irons, the driver she used to place 10th at Q-School, a Cleveland wedge, and a Taylormade putter. (I'll have to say he putted well and wanted to keep the instrument of his success.) The reason he had to use Bern's clubs is that his own were stolen out of his own car in front of his own house right there in All-American suburban Atlanta. Afterwards we came back to my place and sucked down some Newcastles and Coronas before Paul and his Dad-in-law had to rush back to Disney so as not to displease the wives, who apparently had everyone on a schedule and no idea what a cold beer and good conversation mean to a man after 5 hours in the hot sun and 95% humidity. "Who's running things?" I asked the father-in-law.

"They are," he said, no hesitation.

That was Monday. Friday, after getting into town, Paul and his wife and three daughters came for dinner. That's right, count'em, 3. One man against 4 women. He's a goner. The girls, if I recall, are two, four, and nine. And basically delightful. It was fun watching Paul's wife (not using her name because I don't know if she wants me to) cut up the barbecue into little tiny chunks for the little ones. I'd forgotten I used to do that. We had ribs, pulled pork, fries, beans, slaw and cornbread. I'd mowed the yard earlier to make the place look half decent, so I knocked back a fair number of Staropramens and Coronas. Bernadette pretty well kept pace with me. I love having daughters for drinking companions. Paul managed one or two Newcastles, and everybody else was on water and cranapple juice. The oldest daughter (Paul's) played the piano (as did TSO's wife when she was here) and drew a picture on a sketch pad I loaned her. The weekend happened to coincide with Elizabeth's birthday, and Mary Helyn missed her so much she went ahead and bought a birthday cake and watched Paul's kids eat it. And then, before I knew it, it was over. Paul and I didn't get to talk much about The Important Things, but then the important stuff was probably happening right in front of us. Said he'd be back soon, though. He'd mentioned bringing along some Chesterton to read in his down time (I can't imagine when that might have been) and has posted some of the fruits of it here. Pretty good stuff.


Paul Cella said...

Corrections and Amplifications:

(1) You have my permission to post video if you like. (Just use the one that at least looks like a decent swing.)

(2) Not suburban, just plain urban Atlanta. We're hardly much farther from downtown than you are.

(3) Even with a clutch of children and in-laws, it is not hard to find time to read a few pages here, a few more there, at Disney World. You're going to be standing around a lot anyway, and eventually the heat will at least briefly silence even the chattiest child, so you just have to be ready for the opportunities.

That Jesuit writer Father Schall made an impression on me years ago when he discussed how much solid reading he is able to do on subways, in cars, waiting in line, etc. He recommends never being caught without reading material.

My own father once exemplified this readiness when he got caught in a broken elevator for several hours, and just calmly got out his book and read until the repairman got it working again.

wl said...

Not suburban, just plain urban Atlanta.

Still, some things ought to be sacred, a man's golf clubs among them.